Victory for California Middle School Student; Pro-Life T-Shirt is Protected Free Speech

Nearly two years later and before the case ever went to trial, a federal court in California entered a judgment on Thursday, August 12, 2010, in favor of a middle school student’s right to wear a pro-life t-shirt to school. The judgment signifies yet another victory in one student’s courageous mission to speak out against abortion.

Tiffany Amador, then a sixth-grade student at McSwain Union Elementary School, wore several different pro-life t-shirts to school throughout the year to make known her strong belief that abortion is wrong. On April 29, 2008, Tiffany donned one of her pro-life t-shirts for National Pro-Life T-Shirt Day. That morning in school, while attempting to eat breakfast, Tiffany was forcefully directed into the principal’s office and ordered to remove her t-shirt. Prior to this incident, Miss Amador was never confronted about the t-shirts she frequently wore to school.

As a result of the school’s actions, the Thomas More Law Center, a national public-interest law firm based in Ann Arbor, Michigan, filed a federal lawsuit in December 2008, alleging that the sixth grader’s constitutional rights had been violated. The Law Center was assisted by Los Angeles attorney William J. Becker, Jr., of the Becker Law Firm.

Robert Muise, Senior Trial Counsel for the Thomas More Law Center, commented, “It is unfortunate that school officials across this country continue to ignore settled law. Students do not shed their constitutional rights at the school house gate. The U.S. Supreme Court made this clear decades ago. So long as school officials seem bent on silencing student speech that they dislike, they will face legal challenge.”

Attorneys Bill Becker and Robert Muise of the Law Center are currently litigating a similar case in Morgan Hill, California, involving students who were ordered to remove American flag t-shirts they wore to school on Cinco De Mayo.

Source: Thomas More Law Center, August 16, 2010

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